Functional neuroimaging and cognitive theory

Michael D. Rugg

in Neuroimaging of Human Memory

Published in print February 2009 | ISBN: 9780199217298
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191696077 | DOI:
Functional neuroimaging and cognitive theory

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There are two principal ways in which neuroimaging data can be employed to inform functional models of cognition. First, the data can be treated in the same way as a behavioural measure, the idea being to use task- or condition-related dissociations in brain activity to dissociate functionally distinct cognitive processes. A second way of using neuroimaging data to draw functional conclusions is through the use of ‘reverse inference’. In this case, the neural correlate of a given cognitive operation is assumed to be sufficiently reliable and specific that its presence can serve as a marker for the engagement of the operation. This chapter discusses issues surrounding these two ways of applying neuroimaging data to the investigation of memory at the functional level.

Keywords: neuroimaging data; behavioural measure; brain activity; reverse inference; neural correlate; memory

Chapter.  4290 words. 

Subjects: Cognitive Psychology

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